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How to install glass block windows in a commercial, industrial, factory or church building

Written by Mike Foti on . Posted in Exterior Remodeling, Windows

Although many people have seen glass blocks installed in for residential basement and bathroom windows there is a certainly mystique surrounding how to properly perform glass block window installation for commercial buildings. Check out the video below and read these 5 steps to learn the basic ways to properly accomplish this process.

 

  • Step 1 – Evaluate the type of structure surrounding the inside & outside of the window opening (masonry, brick veneer, steel, aluminum or wood buildings). Glass block windows can be installed in any of these different building types – although the process may vary between them.

 

  • Step 2 – Determine what materials the existing windows are made of (metal, aluminum, wood frames). In most commercial, factory and church windows removing the existing frames is the preferred approach as long as the framing is not tied into a surrounding structure that will be damaged if the frames are removed.

 

  • Step 3 – Measure the width & height of the openings. Longer & taller openings will require an aluminum channel style installation to allow for proper expansion & contraction. Most opening greater than 50 square feet require aluminum channels so the panel sections won’t break during the freeze/thaw cycle.

 

  • Step 4 – Use prefabricated commercial glass block windows strengthened with vinyl or steel reinforcing to reduce installation time, improve security, and minimize downtime & disruption for a business. In the old days most industrial glass block windows were mortared together by a mason contractor block by block once the window opening was created. This process takes a long time, can be messy and can lead a building that needs remodeling open too long. The pre-made sections can cut installation costs, improve the quality (shop built assemblies can be more uniform than site built windows), and can significantly reduce the amount of time a window area is open for a retrofit project.

 

  • Step 5 – Choose a glass block, general or maintenance contractor with expertise in commercial, architectural or industrial projects. Some commercial window projects can involve quite large areas that can involve challenges like protrusions through the window or they can be high off the ground. Projects like these may not be a good idea for an unfamiliar company maintenance department and may be best handled by an experienced general or glass block contractor.

 

Do you have any questions or input about how to install a commercial, industrial or church glass block window? Please comment below.

 

 

If you need more information about installing glass block commercial, factory or church windows visit Cleveland Glass Block (216-531-6363), Columbus Glass Block (614-252-5888 or nationwide at or Mid America Glass Block (513-742-5900) of Cincinnati or Dayton.

 

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Mike Foti

President of Innovate Building Solutions a nationwide supplier and regional (Cleveland and Columbus) remodeling contractors. Some of our product lines include glass counters, floors, backsplashes, glass blocks and grout free shower and tub wall panels

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